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While the CHI pilot is in the middle of its im-
plementation process, AAS anticipates this new
customer will realize significant savings once the
program is up and running in its entire 20-state
hospital system by the end of 2010.
Caspers urges other members to take advan-
tage of the current buyer's market and consider
HealthTrust's Sta ng Management service through
All About Sta ng. "There isn't as much of a need for
traveling nurses right now and facilities aren't taking
a lot of risk. But we all know the economy ebbs and
flows, and eventually the market will turn around, so
we'll need to be prepared for the next nursing short-
age. This is the time to negotiate, get your pricing
locked in and your program in place."
With many hospitals facing declin-
ing reimbursements and increasing ex-
penses, HealthTrust's Spend Analytics
program steps into the gap, helping
members get the most out of contracts
and optimizing their supply
spend. The program guides hospitals in better
understanding their numbers and in identifying
opportunities for cost savings.
It was the tool's cost-savings opportunities
that attracted the attention of Dave Riddell,
vice president of support services at Cookeville
Regional Medical Center, Cookeville, Tenn.
"HealthTrust has proved itself to be a very ca-
pable business partner. We welcomed the op-
portunity to work together with them to improve
our cost position," he says.
"The goal of the program is to provide mem-
bers with visibility into their own purchasing
patterns," says Kevin Replogle, director of infor-
mation management at HealthTrust. "For larger
IDNs with facilities across the country, this is a big
issue. They might not have the visibility they need on
the accounts payable side of the house when an invoice
comes in to know if the invoice is accurate."
But the program is helpful for smaller facilities,
too. A problem common to facilities of any size is lack
of contract awareness related to particular products.
Even if a facility is aware of its contract terms, it may
not be getting the contract price on the product.
Spend Analytics allows a hospital to see that a con-
tract is available at a negotiated price---knowledge
they can use to cut costs.
The spend analytics program is also useful when it
comes to information on physician preference items,
Replogle says. Through the data, a member might
see lower price alternatives for devices a physician is
requesting. If a physician can be convinced to move
products or brands to a contracted item, the hospital
could realize savings in that area as well.
"Knowledge is power---if you know there is a less
costly alternative, you can at least have the conversa-
tion with the clinician," Replogle says.
HealthTrust's Spend Analytics tool is powered
by BravoSolution, a software and professional ser-
vices group that specializes in supply management
support. Before embarking on his hospital's pilot
program, Riddell had meetings with HealthTrust
and BravoSolution to discuss his goals and how the
tool could best meet his needs. The team zeroed
in specifically on his non-salary costs, including
service contract spend, to determine what the pric-
ing on certain items should be versus what he was
"The tool has the ability to get at a deeper, more
granular level of comparison," Riddell says. "Our
hospital's materials information system can do that
on an internal basis, but it's not easy to manipulate.
Plus, our internal system has no way of comparing
pricing to the current group purchasing price avail-
able through HealthTrust. It's always a challenge
for hospitals and manufacturers to be on the same
page when it comes to contract pricing, but Spend
Analytics should help us make sure we're paying the
right price---not to mention the time it will save us
on correcting purchase order errors."
Riddell's team has just started using the tool,
but he's positive about the possibilities. "We know
there's always something that can be improved," he
says. "I'm optimistic that we will identify multiple
savings opportunities in various areas like o -con-
tract spend and incorrect pricing. We're committed
to using the tool to do that."
© LUCA DI FILIPPO / ISTOCKPHOTO.COM
of support services,
With hospitals facing
and increasing expenses,
many, like Cookeville
Regional Medical Center,
are looking for cost-
Analytics tools o ered
visibility into Riddell's
patterns that could
potentially improve his
Before embarking on
the Spend Analytics pilot
program, Riddell had
meetings with HealthTrust
and BravoSolution to
discuss his goals and
how the tool could best
meet his needs. The team
zeroed in specifically
on his non-salary costs,
including service contract
spend, to determine what
the pricing on certain
items should be versus
what he was paying.
Riddell is optimistic
that the program will
identify multiple savings
opportunities in various
areas like o -contract
spend and incorrect
pricing. He hopes to
gain some significant
reduction of error in
the challenging area of
hospital to vendor to GPO
price matching. He also
foresees the program
yielding time savings
for sta .
28 Third Quarter 2010 | The Source
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